Some restorative school programs offer restorative interventions in the form of various circle processes when conflict occurs. Someone somewhere in the hierarchy of the school determines which cases will be referred to RJ facilitators and which ones will be handled in the traditional punitive way. These programs produce some change, but without an environment to support them, their impact is constrained. It is like catching the babies as they come downstream, but it does not address the problem of the babies being thrown into the river.

....Is this type of mixture of non-punitive and punitive approaches required? Does the presence of punitive measures violate the integrity of the restorative process? Is it possible to create an environment that exclusively uses non-punitive measures, but has a process whereby those who continuously violate the norms of the restorative community are moved to a separate system where punitive measures are then employed? Is this a way to more effectively achieve culture change?

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